The holiday season can be a perfect year for many small businesses. People shop for gifts. Families travel, going out to eat more common. All of these activities lead to more sales for small businesses. The key to a successful holiday season in 2021 is to prepare. Preparation is critical if you want operations to flow seamlessly. Otherwise, you could find yourself in trouble and scrambling to keep up.
A few facts to keep in mind as we near the end of the year:
– In 2020, eCommerce spending was up by over 13% from 2019.
– Average daily online revenue hovered around 2.3 billion last year.
– Almost 80% of shoppers did the bulk of their holiday shopping in December.
As you can see, there is a lot of money to be made in the next couple of months, and small businesses can stake their claim as well. Again, the key is to ensure that you are ready for that holiday rush.
Start Preparing Your Business Now!
So what can you do in anticipation of all of the buying that is to come? Of course, you want to make sure that your company is putting its best foot forward. While sales are up to during the holidays, competition also gets somewhat tighter. You have to outshine the other companies. And you have to do your best to attract customers and deliver on quality and value.
1) Make Those Changes You’ve Been Putting Off
Perhaps throughout the year, you’ve thought about instituting some changes, changes that could have a beneficial impact, such as, for example, hiring a social media director. Don’t wait any longer to make those changes. These adjustments could pay off significantly during the holiday season and thus help generate even more revenue.
2) Hire on More Personnel
It probably goes without saying that the busier you are, the more help you will need. Hiring on seasonal service is not an uncommon practice it is most likely a necessary practice. The important thing is to hire people before you need them and thus get them the proper training. The worst thing you can do is hire people in a panic, throw them into the deep end and watch as they run around lost and eventually frustrated.
3) Line Up Your Marketing
What is the one thing common to most businesses around this time of year: they engage in promos and specials. How will people know what your special promos are? This is where effective marketing comes into play. Getting the word out there via social media, your site, ads, and various other channels will help guarantee that people see what you have to offer. This, in turn, will attract more customers during that pivotal time of year.
4) Plan Vacations Accordingly
Not only is the holiday season a popular time for people to shop and eat out, but it is also a modern time for taking vacations and time off. You have to afford your workers the flexibility to take time off during the holiday season, and at the same time, you can’t have everyone taking off all at once. This is where you need to strategize. Sit down with your team and create vacation schedules that accommodate them without undermining the business.
5) Get Your Website Ready
As noted, eCommerce is among the most popular ways to shop during the holidays. Online sales year after year keep going up. Is your site ready to accommodate the extra hits and clicks? If not, then it may be time to call in some backup, well before the online shopping rush starts. If there’s a glitch in your site, if people are waiting long periods to check out or if that checkout process is too complex, they are going to look elsewhere—it is easy for them to go to a competitor online. Make sure your site is holiday-ready!
First Union Lending Has You Covered
If you don’t think your business is fully prepared for the upcoming holiday season, we can help. We can get you the extra capital you need to launch a marketing campaign, hire on more staff or upgrade your website. Call today and let’s get started together!